Many think that Jesus Christ wants us to become religious. They believe Jesus pertained to take all the enjoyable from life, and offer us difficult rules to live by. They want to call him a great leader from the past, however state he is not pertinent to their lives today.
Josh McDowell was an university student who believed Jesus was simply another spiritual leader who set up difficult rules to live by. He believed Jesus was absolutely irrelevant to his life.
Then one day at a student union lunch table McDowell sat next to a lively young coed with a glowing smile. Intrigued, he asked her why she was so happy. Her immediate reply was, "Jesus Christ!"
Jesus Christ? McDowell bristled, shooting back:
"Oh, for God's sake, don't provide me that trash. I'm fed up with religion; I'm fed up with the church; I'm fed up with the Bible. Don't provide me that garbage about religious beliefs."
However the unfazed young coed calmly notified him,
"Mister, I didn't state religious beliefs, I said Jesus Christ."
McDowell was shocked. He had never considered Jesus more than a religious figure, and didn't want any part of religious hypocrisy. Yet here was this joyful Christian female discussing Jesus as someone who had actually brought implying to her life.
Christ asserted to address all the deep concerns about our existence. At one time or another, we all question what life is all about. Have you ever gazed up at the stars on a pitch-black night and questioned who put them there? Or have you ever seen a sunset and thought about life's biggest questions:
"Who am I?"
"Why am I right here?"
"Where am I going after I die?"
Although other theorists and spiritual leaders have provided their responses to the definition of life, just Jesus Christ showed his credentials by increasing from the dead. Skeptics like McDowell who initially scoffed at Jesus' resurrection, have actually discovered that there is engaging proof that it actually occurred.
Jesus provides life with actual meaning. He stated that life is much more than generating income, having a good time, being successful, then winding up in a graveyard. Yet, many individuals still try to find meaning in fame and success, even the best superstars.
Madonna attempted to respond to the concern of, "Why am I right here?" by ending up being a diva, confessing, "There were many years when I believed fame, fortune, and public approval would bring me happiness. But one day you get up and realize they do not. I still felt something was missing. I needed to know the definition of real and long lasting joy and how I might go about discovering it." ¹ Others have given up on finding definition. Kurt Cobain, lead singer of the Seattle grunge band Nirvana, despaired of life at age 27 and dedicated suicide. Jazz-age cartoonist Ralph Barton also found life to be worthless, leaving the following suicide note: "I have actually had few problems, numerous good friends, terrific successes; I have gone from partner to other half, and from residence to residence, visited nations of the world, but I am fed up with creating gadgets to fill up 24-HOUR of the day." ² Pascal, the terrific French philosopher, believed this inner void all of us experience can only be filled by God. He states, "There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every male which just Jesus Christ can fill." ³ If Pascal corrects, then we would expect Jesus to not only answer the concern of our identity and definition in this life, however also to provide us hope for life after we pass away.
Can there be suggesting, without God? Not according to atheist Bertrand Russell, who composed, "Unless you presume a god, the concern of life's function is worthless."4 Russell resigned himself to ultimately "rot" in the grave. In his book, Why I am not a Christian, Russell dismissed everything Jesus stated about life's meaning, including his pledge of immortality.
But if Jesus actually defeated death as eyewitnesses claim, (See "Did Jesus Rise from the Dead?") then he alone would be able to tell us exactly what life is all about, and response, "Where am I going?" In order to understand how Jesus' words, life, and death can develop our identities, give us suggesting in life, and provide expect the future, we need to comprehend exactly what he said about God, about us, and about himself.
This post was excerpted from "Is Jesus Relevant Today?". Continue reading to discover exactly what Jesus stated about God, about us, and about Himself.
¹ O: The Oprah Magazine, "Oprah speaks with Madonna," (January, 2004), 120.
² Quoted in Josh McDowell, The Resurrection Aspect (San Bernardino, CA: Right here's Life Publ., 1981), 1.
³ Estimated in William R. Bright, Jesus and the Intellectual (San Bernardino, CA: Right here's Life Publ., 1968), 33.4 Priced quote in Rick Warren, The Function Driven Life (Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan, 2002), 17.